Unwholly by Neal Shusterman (Unwind Series, Book 2)
January 07, 2013
Did you LURVE (that's like love, but too intense to spell correctly) Unwind? Did you pine away waiting patiently for a sequel to come out? Did you write to Neal Shusterman begging for more about Connor, Risa, and Lev? Well, after five long years, our prayers have been answered. Unwholly is here, and it doesn't disappoint.
It's been a year since the Admiral left Connor in charge of the Graveyard. In that time, he's learned a lot about the Anti-Divisional Resistance's disorganization, miscommunication, and general lack of support for it's rescuees. While the incident at Happy Jack Harvest Camp gained support for unwinds initially, the backlash has been severe from people who have made unwinding into big business.
New legislation is passed preventing 17-year-olds from being unwound, but in response, marketing campaigns are revved up to encourage people to unwind their children "for the good of society." The text is interspersed with advertisements encouraging "the divided state" and the role of helping other injured humans.
Starkey is a stork. He was left on the doorstep of a family, and by law, they were forced to raise him. Never one to be subservient, he has always held a certain amount of resentment for his so-called family. He didn't make much of an effort to stay on their good side and was always teased as a child. As he grew into adolescence, he made an effort to be too big and mean to tease, but he's still surprised when they come to take him away. Channelling Connor, he shoots his Juvenile Officer with his own gun and manages to escape. He finds his way to the resistance and to the Graveyard. There he begins his insidious, cunning rise to power, creating a "Stork Club" and building a group of kids loyal to him by playing on their insecurities as storked children.
Camus Comprix (read: Caymoo Compree), or Cam, is a composite human created exclusively of unwound parts from 99 different unwinds. He is made up of the smartest, fastest, most diverse group imaginable to become the ultimate new advancement in medical science. While he embodies all the elements of unwinding, he is also an abomination to many. His face is a literal quilt of different skin colors, and his first conscious moments are an exercise in patience as his mind begins to make connections between all his neural pathways. He has existing knowledge from the previous owners of his elements, but he must learn how to access this knowledge. Roberta is his mother, his teacher, his confidante in this endeavor, and she acts as his handler to the rest of the world. It is she that introduces him to the media.
My typical synopsis would give too much away. These character sketches will have to do enough to intrigue you. READ THIS BOOK! Shusterman is a master of blending suspense and almost truths into a can't-put-down thriller that makes you want to have philosophical conversations. (Ok, so that last part may have just been me.) The way this story begins to unfold puts a new spin on the value of human life. What is it that makes us human exactly?
"The sad truth about humanity, Risa was quick to realize, is that people believe what they're told. Maybe not the first time, but by the hundredth time, the craziest of ideas just becomes a given," (Shusterman, 2012).
UnSouled by Neal Shusterman (Unwind series, Book 3) Expected publication 10/15/13
The Uglies Series by Scott Westerfeld
Variant by Robison Wells
Partials by Dan Wells
South Independence Branch